“Universities Closing Gaps But More Can Be Done”
Kuala Lumpur, 5th September 2019 – According to the Centre of Excellence in AI Innovation (CE.A.I), the higher education sector in Malaysia is starting to narrow the gap between what is being taught in schools and the needs of the industry pertaining to digital transformation and artificial intelligence (AI). While progress is gradual, the pace of transformation could be faster and more effective if schools use the right approach to expedite the process.
CE.A.I observes that due to the effects of globalisation and Industry 4.0, the quantity and depth of knowledge in AI seem to double every three years. This exponential increase in AI intelligence will profoundly change the educational system in time to come, as the need and ability to move information more quickly and economically becomes greater and more wide-spread. These developments will require a repositioning of the universities.
The solution is a special programme called Multiversity 4.0 (“M4.0”), developed by leading AI firm, MyFinB, in partnership with CE.A.I. M4.0 provides key ideas for universities on how to position themselves in a competitive AI environment and respond globally to such challenges. More importantly, M4.0 explores strategies for universities to design and apply AI-driven platforms to:
- innovate the teaching and learning experience
- evolutionise research through the use of big data and artificial intelligence
- drive improved business operations against performance objectives
- support robust and data-driven decision making to proactively support university stakeholders
“We have both the good and bad fortune of having to experience a time of rapid changes to business models due to technological disruption. Technologies, pedagogies, practices and competition are in flux. Obviously, the stakes are very high – if a university commits to the broad implementation of a particular technology, strategy or practice that fails, thousands of students are impacted, programmes are closed, reputations are damaged and millions of dollars go down the drain,” according to M Nazri, the President and Founder of MyFinB and CE.A.I.
He added, “Universities have to embark on a cognitive analytics exercise to predict trends rather than rely only on historical trends or human assessment to avoid costly mistakes or failures. Vast amounts of information need to be processed objectively and rapidly to take into account a few hundred thousand variables. These involve student profiles, the external environment, teaching and learning styles, emerging industry trends, and financial and business profiles of companies, just to name a few. We have to relook at what is being taught in schools and use data and machines to continuously assess their relevance.“
“In short, universities need to invest more into machines that can help them attain more accurate foresight with limited bias or viewpoints by crunching more current data and introduce future variables and scenarios.“
As part of the M4.0 programme, CE.A.I and MyFinB are partnering with universities like UNITAR International University (UNITAR) and Quest International University Perak (QIU), and have signed MOUs with them.
Some key areas of collaboration include the creation of digital AI labs to build new intellectual property assets, development of AI-related courses, employment and industrial attachment opportunities, and the setting up of satellite CE.A.I centres within the universities to create more awareness on the implications of AI for the future.
An MOU ceremony was held at the Bunga Raya Auditorium on 5 September at Cyberjaya. It was organised by MDEC as part of an overarching programme called the MDEC Premier Digital Tech Institutions (PDTIs).
CE.A.I. and MyFinB expect more public and private universities to participate in the M4.0 programme amidst ongoing discussions and strong interests in the field of AI and data analytics.
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